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NBD: Tony Franklin fretless

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by nostatic, May 14, 2011.


  1. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    Well, so maybe I was happy with my current stable, but at heart I'm a fretless guy and the recent purchase of my AmDlxP made my AmStdP expendable. As luck would have it my local shop got a used TF in and after a quick action adjustment in the middle of checking it out for the second time I snapped it up (and the 7.9lb AmStdP is off to the classifieds). From the serial number it appears to be an '08 build, and per the buyer at the store the previous owner essentially bought the bass and then never played it. I can't see any wear on the fingerboard and it has roundwounds on it. Have done some minor tweaks on pup height but that is all it needs. Weight in at 8.5 lbs. First order of business is another Levy padded leather strap and straplocks, and a set of Hipshot light tuners to replace the stock heavy ones and ditch the D-tuner. That actually should drop the weight by almost a half pound if my math is correct.

    Will gig it tonight - and as always, no pics, no bass.

    tf1.

    tf2.

    tf3.

    tf4.

    tf5.

    tf6.

    tf7.
     
  2. esa372

    esa372

    Aug 7, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    Beautiful!
     
  3. dmrogers

    dmrogers Supporting Member

    Jan 26, 2005
    Eastman, GA
    :hyper:
     
  4. chanson

    chanson Supporting Member

    I've always loved this bass. I'd love to own one, but I'm not sure how I feel about the lack of fret lines, haha!
     
  5. change-jug

    change-jug

    Oct 11, 2008
    Buffalo,NY
    Aw man! I`m so jealous! I`ve been wanting one of these super fine basses for a while now. Enjoy!
     
  6. El-Bob

    El-Bob

    Oct 22, 2006
    Hamilton, ON
    I've never had the pleasure of playing one, but I've always wanted to. These seem like a really sweet bass. Congrats!
     
  7. Tampabass

    Tampabass Going Viral By 2080 Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2006
    Tampa
    I know you are, but what am I?
    congrats. I've had mine for several months (same color) and loving it. Yeah, I've thought about ditching the tuners, too, to drop the weight a bit.
     
  8. Mojo-Man

    Mojo-Man

    Feb 11, 2003
    :cool:

    Very nice.
    I had an early 70's P-Bass set up like this for years.
    How do you like stock pickups?
    Other than the D-tuner, I'm not a fan.
    I dig these basses a lot.
    What string are you using on this?
    Nice bass enjoy.
     
  9. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    Gigged with it tonight. Took my MB-2, AmDlxP and the TF. Per my g/f, the TF was 3rd best sounding, but frankly the MB-2 and AmDlxP flat out kill so that is an unfair comparison. I'm not sure what strings are on it, and I need to do a few more pup adjustments. I do like having adjustable pole pieces on the J, but am not smitten with the tone at this point. I've got a set of Cleartones I may put on (have never tried them), otherwise will likely run Sunbeams like I have on the AmDlxP.

    There is some neck dive, but losing the old school tuners and d-tuner will cure that. I like the weight and it is fun to have a bit more nasty fretless (relative to the Rob Allen) to mess with. I actually really like the 3-way switch. Very easy to flick between tones on the fly - can groove on the P and then do a quick fill on the J, then back again. Very cool.

    I may put a preamp in at some point (can run my Paradriver externally), but will take things one at a time. First is some more pup adjustments, then strings, then tuner swap. At that point I think I'll have a nice, light fretless and can figure out if I want to mess with pups/preamp.
     
  10. kesslari

    kesslari Groovin' with the Fusion Cats Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2007
    Santa Cruz Mtns, California
    Lark in the Morning Instructional Videos; Audix Microphones
    Enjoy. It's vicarious fun to watch you experiment, from your Zons to Roscoes to Fenders (keeping the MB as a semi-constant).
     
  11. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    As my dad used to say, "son, you're not useless, you can always serve as a bad example." :D

    The Rob Allens are keepers. They absolutely kill for some of the stuff that I do. And I have zero complaints about the MB-2 and the Deep 5. The biggest thing has been the transition back to 4-string. Up until a few months ago, I hadn't regularly played a 4-banger since early '00. Since I'm prone to obsessive behavior, when I finally clicked with the P-bass (on the 3rd time trying to play a 4-string after a decade of 5s), I dove in head first.

    The PJ also just slays. I can't believe how much I love that bass. The TF has a tough act to follow, but it is a different beast that I need to approach differently so I'm going to enjoy the experiment. Since I bought it used if it doesn't work out I won't get nearly as battered flipping it as I did buying the Roscoes new. But life is short and time spent playing is better than time spent doing most anything else. Live the experiment. Another gig tomorrow night and I'm also messing with a new Source Audio Bass Envelope Filter (killer combined with the Multiwave Bass Distortion), and on a whim bought one of the new TC delay pedals after my buddy got one earlier in the day. Very fun and mind expanding. So lots of variables at the moment, but might as well live on the edge.
     
  12. Nice! Always wanted one. How is the new TC Delay? Is it the Flashback?
     
  13. cassius987

    cassius987 Banned

    Apr 20, 2007
    Denver, CO
    I didn't realize the Jazz pickup on these had adjustable pole pieces. Kind of nice.
     
  14. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    Second gig last night. was happier running the Paradriver to give it a bit more kick. Ordered up the ultralight tuners, should be squared away by next weekends gigs.

    Example track last night: http://nostatic.com/mp3/15may11/impressions.mp3

    First time doing that tune with this ensemble. Normally I'd use the Rob Allen and do a more "upright" vibe but variety is the spice of...um...something...
     
  15. Hi nostatic,

    I just bought back my TF fretless after having sold over a year ago. The guy I sold it too was kind enough to offer it to me before listing it. Anyway, mine is also neck heavy and I'm also thinking about light weight tuners.

    Could you please let me know what specific model of tuners you ordered and give an update when they are installed. I'd be curious how much lighter the bass feels, how the neck dive improves, and if drilling holes was required to install the replacement tuners. Thanks for your feedback.

    John
     
  16. Im very envious right now.....
     
  17. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    I bought the Hipshot Ultralight clover tuners 1/2" (fits 11/16" ream). Installed them last night. Was a bit of a pita to knock out the stock inserts but figured it out (used the new insert and a plastic hammer). Easy to install after I banged the inserts out. Eyeballed them, drilled a small hold for the single screw, then tightened them down.

    Weight before: 8.5 lbs
    weight after: 8.0 lbs

    No neck dive at all now. I highly recommend this mod, though you will have a bunch of exposed holes on the back of the headstock (the stock tuners use 4 screws). If you want a pristine bass that is all stock, obviously not the choice. For me though, a half pound is a huge difference, not only in overall weight but balance. I never use the d-tuner anyway. There is a lightweight version of that available as well though.
     
  18. Thanks for the update, nostatic. I think I will get a set for my TF as well. I'm not too concerned about the exposing the old tuner holes in back either.

    John
     
  19. Shakin-Slim

    Shakin-Slim

    Jul 23, 2009
    Tokyo, Japan
    Such a beautiful bass!!! And it sounds fantastic on your recording of Impressions. Not to mention the playing!
     
  20. I'm getting mine tomorrow, I can't wait!
     

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